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#41
37 Posts
Joined Mar 2015
Mike,

Your so kind to answer so quickly. I thank you for the first hand knowledge which I find valuable! Looking forward to trying out your recommendations. Have a great night!

Carol


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#42
PA
61 Posts
Joined Apr 2013
NanaBanana3,

We are taking the New England Island Cruise.

I hope you will love Charleston. It's a beautiful historic city. We enjoy a carriage ride, there are several routes (to which you are assigned randomly most of the time), and all are interesting for an overview of the city. Wondering on foot ALWAYS is fun with many interesting things to see. The Aquarium is very nice if that is your thing.

Check out these restaurants on tripadvisor. We like all of them: Peninsula Grill, 82 Queen (Southern cuisine, we enjoy lunch there and love the courtyard atmosphere), Anson, Slightly North of Broad, Magnolia (longtime favorite of many), Hank's Seafood. I usually choose seafood at any of them and love it.

Hilton Head is very busy, but if you view it as a resort destination it is a beautiful spot. You might enjoy Harbortown in Sea Pines. The harbor is filled with Luxury yachts, the Lighthouse offers lovely views of the area, and the shops are fun to explore with some uniques gift ideas. There are several restaurants for a nice lunch. If you enjoy the beach, the wide, white sand beaches are some of the best. The golf courses are great!
#43
Atkinson, NH USA
9,716 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by brumagin1
NanaBanana3,

We are taking the New England Island Cruise.

I hope you will love Charleston. It's a beautiful historic city. We enjoy a carriage ride, there are several routes (to which you are assigned randomly most of the time), and all are interesting for an overview of the city. Wondering on foot ALWAYS is fun with many interesting things to see. The Aquarium is very nice if that is your thing.

Check out these restaurants on tripadvisor. We like all of them: Peninsula Grill, 82 Queen (Southern cuisine, we enjoy lunch there and love the courtyard atmosphere), Anson, Slightly North of Broad, Magnolia (longtime favorite of many), Hank's Seafood. I usually choose seafood at any of them and love it.

Hilton Head is very busy, but if you view it as a resort destination it is a beautiful spot. You might enjoy Harbortown in Sea Pines. The harbor is filled with Luxury yachts, the Lighthouse offers lovely views of the area, and the shops are fun to explore with some uniques gift ideas. There are several restaurants for a nice lunch. If you enjoy the beach, the wide, white sand beaches are some of the best. The golf courses are great!
When are you doing the New England Islands cruise? We are scheduled for that itinerary next March.


NRayH
#45
Atlanta/Key West
10,032 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Originally posted by brumagin1
We are going the end of August.
We are going the second week of September so be sure and come back to let us know how your cruise was.

Mike
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#46
Atkinson, NH USA
9,716 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by brumagin1
We are going the end of August.
Originally posted by bhopal21
We are going the second week of September so be sure and come back to let us know how your cruise was.

Mike
Along with Mike, we will be looking for your comments on this itinerary.


NRayH
#47
37 Posts
Joined Mar 2015
We just returned from our American Cruise line Historic South Golden Isle one week vacation. We have mixed reviews of the trip.

A quick overview of the ship itself. We cruised aboard the Independence. We had a lower level room 114 with large opening window. The room is quite spacious with plenty of room to unpack and get comfortable. The bathroom is large compared to any other cruise we have taken. There is also lots of storage. The shower has great water pressure. We felt the decor is somewhat dated and could use a freshening up. I had read that comment a few times before our departure and now whole heartedly agree. Having been on A few European cruises with Viking and there is no comparison in luxury. Traveling with an American crew can not be compared. They were fun, happy and attentive but lacked the professional European flair.

We flew into Charleston and stayed at the Holiday Inn Riverview. We enjoyed this hotel very much. There was a free shuttle bus into town and the driver was quite knowledgeable. There is a decent restaurant on the top floor with a gorgeous view of the harbor. We took a cab to the cruise ship for 5$ each. While in Charleston we took a carriage tour and were a bit disappointed as the routes are randomly chosen for you and we missed highlights we had hoped to see. We then hired a pedicab to take us about to see a few of them. They charged 5.50 every ten minutes but a delightful way to see the city up close. We had a wonderful lunch at Hymans seafood restaurant. Oh my is was delicious. Be warned the line to get in can be very long but we felt worth it.

Beaufort. We took a bus tour with American cruise lines. This was a wonderful tour. One of our very favorites. The guide was such a delight, she was an amazing storyteller. Every tour we took left at approx. 9 am with a return to the ship in time for 12:30 lunch.

Hilton Head. I loved this beautiful resort location. We rented bikes on our own and rode all around the area exploring. The bike paths are easy to navigate and wide. We went to the beach, a golf resort, Heritage farms, and out to the lighthouse. On our return to town we had a lovely lunch at the Crazy Crab. Very good. There were quite few shops right by the harbor.

Savannah. Our excursion was a trolley tour and we relay enjoyed it. It gave you the ability to hop on and off after our lunch back at the ship. We went back to the market area for a few souvenirs. The ship was docked at a great location for strolling the Riverview with restaurants and shopping

Sapelo island. We felt this was a wasted stop. The ship anchored with nothing in sight except the small dock to tender over to. The only excursion offered was a school bus tour of the area followed by an oyster roast. No one in our group took the tour so I can not give any feedback on it. We took the time to just relax top deck and read.

Jekyll Island. The excursion was a tour of the turtle rescue followed by a tram ride narrative tour of Jekyll Island. We thought the two excursions could have been offered separately and charged a lesser fee. We were not interested in the turtle rescue but found the Jekyll island tour fascinating.

Amelia Island. We had to tender into town and spent the day strolling around sightseeing with a bit of shopping. A quaint pretty yet touristy area.

The food was excellent and some of the best I've had on a cruise. The chef came out and visited every table to ensure satisfaction.

About half way through the the cruise about a dozen or more people got very sick. With vomiting and diarrhea. My husband being one of them. The crew were busy bleaching everything and putting out hand sanitizer. It was evident at dinner with all the empty seats how many passengers it effected. Luckily it only lasted about 24-36 and didn't run the course of the entire trip.

All in all we had a lovely vacation and loved touring the historical south. My honest opinion of the cruise is it is overpriced for experience. I guess we like the European professionalism and flair. It is just a matter of opinion. We will stick to Viking in the future.


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#48
Atkinson, NH USA
9,716 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by Nanabanana3
We just returned from our American Cruise line Historic South Golden Isle one week vacation. We have mixed reviews of the trip.

A quick overview of the ship itself. We cruised aboard the Independence. We had a lower level room 114 with large opening window. The room is quite spacious with plenty of room to unpack and get comfortable. The bathroom is large compared to any other cruise we have taken. There is also lots of storage. The shower has great water pressure. We felt the decor is somewhat dated and could use a freshening up. I had read that comment a few times before our departure and now whole heartedly agree. Having been on A few European cruises with Viking and there is no comparison in luxury. Traveling with an American crew can not be compared. They were fun, happy and attentive but lacked the professional European flair.

We flew into Charleston and stayed at the Holiday Inn Riverview. We enjoyed this hotel very much. There was a free shuttle bus into town and the driver was quite knowledgeable. There is a decent restaurant on the top floor with a gorgeous view of the harbor. We took a cab to the cruise ship for 5$ each. While in Charleston we took a carriage tour and were a bit disappointed as the routes are randomly chosen for you and we missed highlights we had hoped to see. We then hired a pedicab to take us about to see a few of them. They charged 5.50 every ten minutes but a delightful way to see the city up close. We had a wonderful lunch at Hymans seafood restaurant. Oh my is was delicious. Be warned the line to get in can be very long but we felt worth it.

Beaufort. We took a bus tour with American cruise lines. This was a wonderful tour. One of our very favorites. The guide was such a delight, she was an amazing storyteller. Every tour we took left at approx. 9 am with a return to the ship in time for 12:30 lunch.

Hilton Head. I loved this beautiful resort location. We rented bikes on our own and rode all around the area exploring. The bike paths are easy to navigate and wide. We went to the beach, a golf resort, Heritage farms, and out to the lighthouse. On our return to town we had a lovely lunch at the Crazy Crab. Very good. There were quite few shops right by the harbor.

Savannah. Our excursion was a trolley tour and we relay enjoyed it. It gave you the ability to hop on and off after our lunch back at the ship. We went back to the market area for a few souvenirs. The ship was docked at a great location for strolling the Riverview with restaurants and shopping

Sapelo island. We felt this was a wasted stop. The ship anchored with nothing in sight except the small dock to tender over to. The only excursion offered was a school bus tour of the area followed by an oyster roast. No one in our group took the tour so I can not give any feedback on it. We took the time to just relax top deck and read.

Jekyll Island. The excursion was a tour of the turtle rescue followed by a tram ride narrative tour of Jekyll Island. We thought the two excursions could have been offered separately and charged a lesser fee. We were not interested in the turtle rescue but found the Jekyll island tour fascinating.

Amelia Island. We had to tender into town and spent the day strolling around sightseeing with a bit of shopping. A quaint pretty yet touristy area.

The food was excellent and some of the best I've had on a cruise. The chef came out and visited every table to ensure satisfaction.

About half way through the the cruise about a dozen or more people got very sick. With vomiting and diarrhea. My husband being one of them. The crew were busy bleaching everything and putting out hand sanitizer. It was evident at dinner with all the empty seats how many passengers it effected. Luckily it only lasted about 24-36 and didn't run the course of the entire trip.

All in all we had a lovely vacation and loved touring the historical south. My honest opinion of the cruise is it is overpriced for experience. I guess we like the European professionalism and flair. It is just a matter of opinion. We will stick to Viking in the future.


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Thank you for sharing your impressions. We agree that the level of professionalism of the dining room staff has been higher on Viking River Cruises, but the service on America was still very nice, and quite acceptable. We are more than willing to repeat on either cruise line.


NRayH
#49
Atlanta/Key West
10,032 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Thanks for your review on the Historic South and Golden Isles.

I assume Jonathan was still head chef on your cruise and we have never had better food on a ship than he prepared.

I'm sorry you missed the Sapelo Island tour and oyster roast as we found it very interesting seeing how the 40 families that occupy Sapelo have evolved over the years being cutoff from the mainland.

Most everyone seems to complain about the decor being dated and a little worn so you would think that ACL would take the initiative to upgrade their cabins.

We do love the American crew and relaxed atmosphere offered by ACL and have another trip with them in September.

Mike
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#50
Atlanta/Key West
10,032 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Originally posted by brumagin1
We are going the end of August.
I have a question about our upcoming cruises.

Do you know if the ship will return to Providence on the last evening of our cruise? We only have a choice of a 0600 or 1700 flight home and don't want to have to spend the day waiting for a late flight.

On our Historic South and Golden Isles we docked the evening before so leaving really early on the final day was no problem.

Thanks for any information,

Mike
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#51
1 Posts
Joined May 2017
Originally posted by Ray in NH
Hmmm, that is interesting. New postings have not been going through, but the response did.

Thanks for joining in with reviving this thread.

After well over 100 ocean cruises and two European rive cruises, we have been favorably impressed with the level of pre-cruise support and assistance offered by American Cruise Lines. we have received a number of mailings (snail and e-mail) offering assistance and information. we even received a "Welcome Aboard" e-mail from the boat's Hotel Director.

We leave in a couple of days and then will spend some "post-cruise" time in New Orleans. I will "try" to send some up-dates from the boat (but no promises here). After we return home I will put together our impressions of the cruise.

NRayH
Hi,
New to this. We are going on the ACL New Orleans to Memphis in June and would certainly appreciate any stories or comments on your experience.

Ztuna
#53
DE
138 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Originally posted by Ray in NH
Does anyone else read this thread???

NRayH
Contact us, Ray in NH as we too are sailing Upper Mississippi in Oct. of this year!
[email protected]
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Regent "Sea" (Alaska)1990
Regent "Star" (Southern Caribbean) 1992
Carnival "Sensation" (Western Caribbean) 1995
"Aranui" (freighter-South Pacific) 2003
Princess "Star" (Eastern Caribbean) 2003
Celebrity "Millenium" (Southern Caribbean) 2004
Oceania "Insignia" (Amazon River) 2005
Celebrity "Infinity" (Panama Canal) 2005
Orient "Marco Polo" (Antarctica) 2007
Grand Circle Travel "Aria" (Eastern European River Cruise) 2007
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Grand Circle Travel "M/S Rossia" (Russian River Cruise) 2008
Oceania "Regatta" (Eastern Caribbean) 2009
Gulet Coastal Cruise in Turkey (OAT tour) 2009
Norwegian "Norwegian Sun" (South America) 2009
Carnival "Valor" (Western Caribbean family cruise) 2011
Oceania "Marina" South Pacific 2013
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Royal Caribbean "Jewel of the Seas" (Greek and Italy) 2016
Royal Caribbean "Jewel of the Seas" (TA) 2016
American Cruise Line's "America" October 2017

Future bookings:
Royal Caribbean's "Harmony of the Seas" February 2018
#55
Atlanta/Key West
10,032 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Originally posted by brumagin1
We are going the end of August.
Interested to hear about your NE Islands trip if/when you return.

We are sailing on the 9/9/17 cruise.

Mike
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#56
Atkinson, NH USA
9,716 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by bhopal21
Interested to hear about your NE Islands trip if/when you return.

We are sailing on the 9/9/17 cruise.

Mike
We are not doing the N.E. Islands cruise until next year 03 Jun 2018.


NRayH
#57
Atlanta/Key West
10,032 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
I'm sorry. I meant to copy brumagin1's response where they said they would be on the NE Islands cruise this week.

Obviously I failed to look at my response.

Maybe they will report.

Mike
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#58
Atkinson, NH USA
9,716 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by bhopal21
I'm sorry. I meant to copy brumagin1's response where they said they would be on the NE Islands cruise this week.

Obviously I failed to look at my response.

Maybe they will report.

Mike
No Problem. We are also hoping they report back, since we will doing the same itinerary later.


NRayH
#60
Atlanta/Key West
10,032 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Headed to Providence RI in the am for Saturday boarding for the New England Islands cruise onboard the Star.

Mike
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